27 November 2010

Geek Chic Guide - "Battle Against Dysentery III" Telethon Donors

We've been getting excited about the "Battle Against Dysentery" for weeks! And it's happening RIGHT NOW! It started at 12 PM EST and will be going until 12 PM EST on Sunday. As a sampler of what kind of swag you can win if you tune in and make a donation, here's a treasury! :D

'"Battle Against Dysentery III" Telethon Donors' by NerdJerk

Some of the awesome items from the lovely Etsy Sellers that donated to the GeeksWithIssues.com's nerdy charity event "The Battle Against Dysentery"!!! The money raised from donations goes to 2 children's charities trying to help kids have a great holiday (some of which are in hospice care). Feel free to donate whatever you can (even $1 helps to try to make the $5000 goal) at http://www.GeeksWithIssues.com/charity - and get a chance at winning some of these awesome items!

Dragon Warrior / Quest ...

Amoeba and Paramecium M...

Star Trek Science Offic...

HOLIDAY SALE - Bob-Omb ...

Microscope Felt Magnet

Shyguy plush - SMB2/Dok...

Candied Bacon Gift Pack...

One 5 in. x 5 in. Steel...

Metroid Plush


One 5 in. Gothic Rag Do...

HOLIDAY SALE - Green Ma...

Bacon of the Month Club...

One 4 in. x 4 in. Steel...

HOLIDAY SALE - Convo Ca...

Get behind this and watch it here:

And please DONATE (even just $1) here:

25 November 2010

Fight Dysentery, Help Kids & Win nerd JERK Awesomeness - A Challenge

This doesn't have to be you - Fight the good fight and help
some kids this Holiday Season while geeking out.

The cool people will know where this image is from.

And if you're not cool enough to remember the sheer AWESOMENESS of the old computer game, "Oregon Trail" in all of its marvelous glory, you're really missing out.

But you don't have to be in the dark anymore... nor must you die of dysentery.

nerd JERK has donated a TON of items to Geeks With Issues in order to help raise money for "The Battle Against Dysentery III" - an annual event that these guys put on in order to raise money for worthy children's charities!

Said Tuck the Producer of the event:
“The Battle Against Dysentery” is a live 24 hour charity webcast and “telethon,” the donations from which are given to two children’s organizations (Child’s Play and Hillcrest Educational Centers) helping younglings in need. The event itself includes special guests, musical performances, prize giveaways and a healthy dose of topical discussion that is the trademark of the Geeks With Issues.
And during this 24 hour charity webcast & "telethon," they'll be playing... you guessed it: "Oregon Trail"!!!

I've been approached my several different organizations that were asking for donations this Holiday Season, but when I read up on what Tuck was really saying (i.e. nerds would me playing this game for 24 hours straight), it made me want to look into the whole event. And as someone who used to play the eff out of this game throughout my entire elementary school career, they won me over!

And I'm glad they did!

As a sponsor, I donated 5 of my items to be given away during the event! All you need to do to win is tune in & donate some funds to a great cause!

The items I've donated include:

Retail Value - $68 USD

1-Up Mushroom
Retail Value - $42 USD

BOOBS Convo Calculator
(recently in Etsy Finds)
Retail Value - $38 USD

The Classic - Mix Tape Journal
Retail Value - $16 USD

Mini Goomba
(recently in Etsy Finds!)
Retail Value - $16

It's not too often that I do giveaways for my own items, but how could I not donate to a bunch of geeks playing old school educational computer games for 24 hours in order to raise money for children?

I hope that you'll feel the same. In fact, right now, you may be asking yourself:
This Is Awesome – How Do I Help?
There are three ways that our viewers can help us make “The Battle Against Dysentery” a rousing success. The first is to donate - the entire reason we do what we do is because we want to give two big fat checks to our charitable organizations. Every dollar you can spare helps us make those checks fatter. The second is to tell other people, and ask them to donate. We’ve always believed that if all you can donate is a dollar, but you tell ten people who also donate a dollar, the kids get $11, and that’s some powerful stuff. Third, you can watch the show – sure, we’re looking for donations, but we’re also hoping to entertain you. We think that you will really enjoy the show, and we look forward to sharing it with you as much as you do to seeing it every year.
If you're a true nerd like me, you'll be stoked to know that the show this year not only feature comedians, but a professional Jean Luc Picard impersonator, from Star Trek: The Next Generation!

This, in itself, is pretty awesome. Add everything up and prepare to have your mind blown away!

If you'd like to donate to the cause and earn some swag from either yours truly or some other rad sponsors, feel free to do so online.

But if you'd like to tune into the awesomeness, GeeksWithIssues.com says:
If you live in Pittsfield, Dalton or Richmond, Massachusetts, you can watch the program live on Time Warner channel 18. If you live outside of that area, you can see the show [on the GeeksWithIssues] website – shortly before the show starts, our blog will switch over to a UStream Player with a chat window, ready for anyone with a computer and a high-speed internet connection to enjoy!

So, if you're stuffed with turkey, too lazy to play the video games yourself, tune in to GeeksWithIssues.com to join "The Battle."
“The Battle” [will be] starting on the Saturday after Thanksgiving at Noon EST. This year, that means the action starts on Saturday, November 27, 2010. As we run for 24 hours non-stop, the show will end at Noon EST on Sunday, November 28, 2010.
Rock on and good luck!

24 November 2010

The Renewal Experiment - A Follow-Up

Growing your brand - stitch by stitch
Photo of pins not yet for sale by nerd JERK

If you've read my last blog post about using free tools to increase traffic to your Etsy shop and increasing your brand's visibility, you've probably asking yourself: Did increased traffic translate into sales?

I forgot to add this incredibly helpful tidbit of quantifiable information to my analysis. Doh! In my defense, I was putting together this information late-night until 5:30 this morning.

Here are the results I saw from my Renewal Experiment:

As of the time of this writing, I currently have 82 sales.

From when I started nerd JERK on Etsy on 12 Oct, 2009 to the day before I started this experiment 8 months later (16 June 2010), I had 28 sales, averging about 4 sales per month without spending much money on relisting (just a few non-sale-generating Etsy Showcases).

From when I started my experiment on 17 June, 2010 up until yesterday (23 November 2010), I have made an additional 54 sales within 6 months (almost doubling my sales for the previous 8 months that I was open). This means I averaged 9 sales per month - a 125% increase in sales! 

It should also be said that 32 of these sales happened in the last 4 weeks, corresponding with the method of renewing in 20 minute intervals during my two highest traffic hours (6 & 7 PM, varying which week I was observing my traffic for).

When I started making sales, I would relist a bit at a time. It took a while (roughly 4 months) to look at the numbers both on Google Analytics & Craftopolis to really see that informed renewing was working out the way I wanted it to. Basically, I didn't want to spend money if I didn't think it would work - so I started by spending a little (only renewing 3 times a day in my top 3 peak hours = $0.60/day or $18/month), which is about the cost of 2 Etsy Category Showcases.

But one day, I asked myself if I could justify reinvesting my assets and diversifying my Peak Hour Renewals. And I decided that it was worth a try. I did 5 renewals a day from mid-September to mid-October (Let's call this Period #1). Then during the last couple of weeks of October until mid-November (Period #2), I decided to try doing 8-10 renewals per day at Peak Hours. My sales jumped from 6 during Period #1 to 32 sales in Period #2! That's a jump of over 500%!

Renewing 5-10 times/day = $1/$2/day or $30 to $60/month, which is about the cost of a blog ad or a craft fair table fee. And sometimes, I don't even make 9 sales during a show. *laughs* So I consider this to be pretty awesome.

I know there's a lot of information here and it may sound REALLY GREAT! And it is!!! But please understand that there are a lot of variables that added to my Renewal Experiment that helped build my brand (i.e. volunteering a ton of my time to Etsy Teams and craft shows) and play a role in the growth of nerd JERK

Also, it didn't happen overnight. It took me over 6 months of renewing, but 14 months in total to figue out how I was going to get people in my shop!

You may not see results like mine right away (it was slower starting for me as well), but I promise that putting forth the effort to promote a brand that you truly believe in will result in shop visibility.

Do your own Renewal Experiment!
Start off small, like I suggested in my initial post. :) Try renewing during your top 3 Peak Hours only 2 days a week (an investment of $1.20 - the price of a cup of coffee). Compare your traffic those days to the other days you go without renewing any listings. What difference do you see?

I'd love to hear your stories! Feel free to share you own experiences and experiments here. As micro-business owners, we can all benefit from expanding our brands during this Handmade Movement. It's always great to hear that little things like this can make a difference in people's lives.
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